PressTV: Congressman Ted Lieu: US troops could be prosecuted for Yemen war crimes: Lawmaker

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An American soldier talks with Saudi troops. (File photo by the US Army)
An American soldier talks with Saudi troops. (File photo by the US Army)

A US congressman has warned that American troops could be prosecuted for providing military support to the Saudi war on Yemen.

Ted Lieu made the warning in a letter to US Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, saying the US government’s denial of target selection for Saudi airstrikes in Yemen does not excuse Washington from legal responsibilities.

“I find it deeply troubling that the US apparently has no advanced knowledge of what targets will be struck by jets that are refueled by US personnel with US tankers,” Lieu said in his letter.

“The US would appear to be violating LOAC [laws of armed conflict] and international standards by engaging in such direct military operations if US personnel are not aware if targets are civilian or military, if the loss of life and property are disproportional, or if the operation is even militarily necessary,” he noted.

A Yemeni boy walks past a mural depicting a US drone and reading: “Why did you kill my family.” (Photo by AFP)

Pointing to the 18-month involvement of US in Saudi war on the Yemeni people, the Democratic congressman stressed that Washington had knowledge of a bombardment campaign hitting civilian targets, including schools and hospitals, multiple times.

“US personnel are now at legal risk of being investigated and potentially prosecuted for committing war crimes. Under international law, a person can be found guilty of aiding and abetting war crimes. Under US law, a person can be found guilty for conspiring to commit war crimes,” Lieu wrote.

The Pentagon has been providing logistic and surveillance support to Saudi Arabia in its military aggression against Yemen, the kingdom’s impoverished southern neighbor, which has killed more than 10,000 Yemenis since its onset in March 2015.

The unprovoked war started by a coalition of Saudi-allies in an attempt to undermine the Houthi Ansarullah movement and reinstate former Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, a staunch ally of the Riyadh regime.

Washington has on several occasions criticized the Saudi regime for its crimes against humanity in Yemen, but has shown no sign of ending its support for Riyadh.

US Representative Ted Lieu of California addresses delegates on the fourth and final day of the Democratic National Convention at Wells Fargo Center on July 28, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by AFP)

In August, the US State Department approved the sale of more than 130 Abrams tanks, 20 armored recovery vehicles and other equipment worth about $1.15 billion to Saudi Arabia.

Saudi-led bombardments have struck hospitals, markets and other places where civilians gather.

In September, Amnesty International reported that a US manufactured bomb had been used in a Saudi strike against a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Yemen’s northwestern province of Hajjah which claimed the lives of 19 people.

In October, more than 140 people lost their lives and over 525 others sustained injuries after Saudi military aircraft struck a hall in the Yemeni capital of Sana’a, where rows of people were attending a funeral.

Yemeni rescue workers pull out a victim from amid the rubble following a Saudi airstrike against a packed funeral site in the capital, Sana’a, on October 8, 2016. (Photo by AFP)

UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen Jamie McGoldrick said last month that the death toll from the Saudi military aggression could rise even further as some areas had no medical facilities, and that people were often buried without any official record being made.


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{p}Press TV (stylised PRESSTV) is a 24-hour English language news and documentary network, affiliated with Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB).{/p} {p}IRIB is state-owned but independent of the Iranian government in its management, and is the only legal TV and radio broadcaster inside Iran. IRIB's head is appointed directly by the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and is considered to be close to the country's conservative political faction.{/p} {p}Press TV is headquartered in Tehran, and has offices and bureaus around the world, including London, Beirut, Damascus, Kabul, and the Gaza Strip. It bills itself as a third alternative to what it considers to be biased Western media and to Sunni media attached to radical Islamic terror groups; critics consider it a shill for the Iranian regime.{/p} {p}Press TV is the first Iranian international news network. Their global Tehran-based headquarters is staffed with outstanding Iranian and foreign media professionals. Press TV is extensively networked with bureaus located in the world's most strategic cities. They feature often neglected voices and perspectives from around the world with aim to build bridges of cultural understanding, encouraging cooperation and unity between human beings of different nationalities, and races. They bring to light untold and overlooked stories of individuals who have experienced the vitality and versatility of political and cultural divides firsthand.{/p} {p}PressTV Official Web Site{/p} {p}*All posts on behalf of PressTV are made by Jim W. Dean{/p}

3 COMMENTS

  1. It’s a whole lot more than “deeply troubling” that the “US apparently has no advanced knowledge of what targets will be struck by jets that are refueled by US personnel with US tankers,” ……. it is time to reign it all in

  2. The U.S. Justice Dept. would prosecute Americans for joining IS/Daesh or for providing support.

    Would the Justice Dept. prosecute U.S. officials for providing support for Saudi terrorism in Yemen?

    If not, then Americans and/or Yemenis can sue U.S. officials for acting as State Sponsors of Terrorism.

    The new federal law that allows law suits against Saudi officials for complicity in 9/11 will probably allow Americans & others to file and win such lawsuits — if U.S. officials continue to support terrorism.

    Congressman Ted Lieu is quite correct: U.S. officials supporting terrorism put themselves in jeopardy.

Comments are closed.